Yesterday was Christmas Eve…and Sunday. At Bread of Life Fellowship a Christmas program was planned and performed for the assembled congregation. There were readers and singers and players of instruments. There were candles and garland and big red bows. We read and sang and played the story of Mary, Joseph, and the Christ Child.
The highlight of the program for me was when my good friend Sarah Rhom sang Mary’s Magnificat…the song Mary sang when she realized the enormity of what God had placed within her. Here’s the portion of scripture telling the story and reciting the hymn:
Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!
And Mary said:
“My soul glorifies the Lord
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has been mindful
of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
holy is his name.
His mercy extends to those who fear him,
from generation to generation.
He has performed mighty deeds with his arm;
he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
He has brought down rulers from their thrones
but has lifted up the humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things
but has sent the rich away empty.
He has helped his servant Israel,
remembering to be merciful
to Abraham and his descendants forever,
even as he said to our fathers.”
(Luke 1:45-55 NIV)
It occurred to me while listening to Sarah sing that we’ve each been blessed by the Lord with a gift…sometimes hidden deep inside. We’ve each been given a gift of promise and potential, a promise destined and designed to bless the world…a gift of enormous potential…if we are courageous enough to allow it to be born. Because until that gift is born it will bless no one.
Mary’s hymn of praise can be our own. My soul glorifies the Lord…for He has been mindful of the humble state of his servant…for the Mighty One has done great things for me—holy is his name. Have you ever felt that overwhelmed? The things God has placed at your hand can be very humbling. Especially when you realize the responsibility that accompanies the gift.
God plants His promise inside us and, after a time of germination, it’s ready to be born. The small seed is ready for the light of day. It’s ready to tested and ready to be trained and honed for its day of service. All the potential that is tightly locked up in its DNA is ready to spring forth.
What about you? Is today the day your gift is ready to be born? Are you ready to give birth to the great and awesome things God has placed within you? Are you ready for the struggle, for the labor of bringing forth the new life? It won’t be easy you know. Your heart will be broken, more than once, like Mary’s heart was when her gift wasn’t accepted, appreciated or held in a special place of honor.
There will be sorrow and pain but there will also be unbelievable joy and fulfillment. Just knowing that you were born for a purpose—a special purpose and you achieved that purpose and brought your gift into the world to bless others. There can be no greater joy, no better way to live your life.
Remember what Elizabeth said to her cousin Mary when she saw her, Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished.
It’s time. We need what you have to offer. We need those things that God placed within you…and you’re the only one who can bring them into this world. We need them today…right now, not next month or next year. Remember, what the Lord has spoken to you in your heart of hearts, He is aching to see come to pass.
He has blessed you with an incredible gift meant to share with your world. Christmas Day would be a great day for a birthday.
That’s awesome… and right on time for me. Thanks for sharing…
you know something i was thinking about last night… if God has put something inside you that He wants you to share… then you can trust that He will make sure that you are taken care of while you are stepping out and sharing your gift… He wants us to succeed! Jesus freakin prays for US. how crazy & cool is that? Birth-days are awesome…
I guess my playing didn’t effect you at all…
just kidding – i love when sarah sings that one too…it always makes me tear up…and i’m being serious
actually…now that I think about it…it wasn’t Sarah’s singing at all that moved me. It was the haunting guitar chords coming from somewhere in the darkened corner of stage left. The other-worldly melodies created by gifted fingering left me speechless. In fact, Sarah’s rather gutteral grunting really got in the way now that I think about it more clearly. Her monotonal liltings covered up the brilliant clarity of the strings expertly plucked by your amazing right hand. Thanks so much for the kick to the head. You know…sometimes we really need help remembering the really important things in life.
Thank you for a beautifully written word of encouragement!
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